WASHINGTON (6/16/11)--Credit Union National Association (CUNA) President/CEO Bill Cheney today will urge members of the Senate Banking Committee to let credit unions help small businesses and the larger American economy by lifting the credit union member business lending cap. The committee hearing, which is scheduled to start at 10 a.m. ET, will focus on Sen. Mark Udall’s S. 509. That bill would lift the MBL cap from 12.25% of assets to 27.5% of total assets. Lifting the cap would inject $13 billion in funds into the economy, creating over 140,000 new jobs, CUNA has estimated. Increasing credit union MBL authority will give small businesses greater affordable financing options, and will offer funding to the small businesses that have all too frequently been turned down by banks. Also, Cheney is expected to note that increasing credit union lending will not only aid economic growth, it will help credit unions increase their earnings, capital contributions, and safety and soundness by allowing them to shift their assets from low-yielding investments into higher-yielding member business loans. The list of S. 509 cosponsors recently grew to 19 with the early June addition of Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.). Similar legislation introduced last year had 15 co-sponsors, but the yearly Senate calendar ended before it could come up for a final vote. A House version of MBL cap lift legislation was introduced earlier this year by Reps. Ed Royce (R-Calif.) and Carolyn McCarthy (D-N.Y.). The House legislation, known as the Small Business Lending Enhancement Act, has 36 additional cosponsors. For more on the hearing, use the resource link.